For a man, getting a haircut is not as difficult a decision as it is for a woman – the main question men think about is how short or long their new hairstyle should be.
For women it’s much more complicated, and not just a matter of how long or short they want their hair.
In Phnom Penh there are a wide variety of barbers, or hair salons. They range from comfortable air-conditioned rooms to a simple chair and a mirror on the footpath.
The cheapest in town are the guys on the footpaths, who charge a maximum of 4,000 riel, or $1. At these sidewalk or footpath barbers, there are few electric hair trimmers and mostly the old-style hand-driven shears plus a pair of sharp scissors.
At the more expensive air-conditioned barber shops or salons, the prices rise to about $5 per haircut, but many also offer extra services like manicures, shaves and ear cleaning and often provide a beverage, mostly weak Chinese tea.
The jury’s still out on where to get the best haircuts in Phnom Penh, but it’s fair to say there are a lot of options.